Nintendo Gives Design Power to the Player

The console and game-making giant is taking on a Web 2.0 glow by allowing gamers to create characters and mess around with content.

What Trinen, Nintendo's manager of localization, showed off at a Sept. 14 promo event in New York could end up transforming game-console technology. Nintendo execs say the feature, dubbed the Mii Channel, will let any user populate games with cartoonish 3-D versions of oneself, friends, film stars, or pro athletes.

It's not the first time console makers will let gamers mess with content. Online versions of The Sims and Everquest have been allowing gamers to customize in-game characters since the late 1990s. But none has ever found a way to let a character from one game step into another…until now. "You can populate your own Wii console with your Mii's," Trinen said. "You can take them on your Wii remote over to your friend's house and let your Mii's populate your friend's Wii console. And then you let your Mii's populate your video games."

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